Are you trying to put the ‘me’ in meditation but don’t know where to start?
There are plenty of ways to help relieve stress, get a better night’s sleep or improve your outlook on life and one of the most best methods to help achieve this is meditation. If you’ve never attempted the practice before, it can be difficult to know where to start. Fortunately, there are a number of apps out there that are waiting to be your companion on your mindfulness journey. Whether you’re a beginner or a habitual meditator, we’ve helped kickstart your journey with these 10 apps that will help calm your mind and bring balance to your life.
10 Percent Happier Meditation
Based on the best-selling 2014 book of the same name, this meditation app is specifically geared towards those who are a bit sceptical of the practice, just as its founder Dan Harris used to be. This app gives you a simple rundown on the basics of meditation with a library of over 500 guided meditation videos tailored to different topics such as anxiety, focus and stress. There is also a section dedicated to sleep which provides the tools to have a more relaxed and restful night’s slumber. Be guided through your meditation journey by leading experts in the field with their stories, tips and wisdom to help you through.
If you feel as though there isn’t enough time in the day to incorporate mindfulness into your routine, then Aura might be the app for you. The short, three-minute guided meditations are generated based on how you’re feeling to put you in the right headspace. You can even choose from a range of music and nature sounds for a self-guided meditation if you want to try it on your own. You have the ability to track your mood and reflect on your progress while connecting to a wider community you can interact and share your experiences with. With Aura, you can see how this short period of mindfulness every day is affecting your mood, your stress levels and your overall wellbeing.
With a guided meditation session for all parts of your life and routine, Buddhify is here to bring some clarity to your every day. This meditation app is perfect for both beginners and those with more experience, offering session lengths of three – 40 minutes and a solo timer option if you want to go it alone. There truly is a category for every situation including meditations tailored to taking a break at work, dealing with difficult emotions, eating, and going to sleep. There are a range of teachers who perform the guided meditations so you can choose the voice and style that suits you best.
One of the most popular mindfulness apps on the market, Calm is perfect for those looking to use meditation to improve their quality of sleep and relaxation. Not only does it feature multiple guided meditation programs with a range of time lengths to suit your schedule, Calm also has a tailored library of sleep stories, soundscapes and music to help you drift off at night. Be lulled to sleep by Stephen Fry leading you through a lavender field in Provence or by listening to the hushed tones of Bob Ross and his paintbrush. Meditation and mindfulness go hand in hand when it comes to bringing more relaxation to your nightly routine, and Calm is a great companion to help you along the way.
For the more experienced meditators out there, Ensō is a simple, sleek and easy way to keep track of your meditation sessions. Rather than guided sessions, this app times your own self-guided mindfulness sessions with interval bells and chimes to help you focus and not lose track of time. You can even measure how you’re improving with Ensō’s progress report function that allows you to track your sessions. With distraction-free mode, you can be sure that no text message or notification will interrupt you so you can get the most out of your meditation experience.
Another great app to help bring a little mindfulness into your day is Headspace. Free to download with in-app purchases, with Headspace there are plenty of guided meditations to choose from with subjects like focus, exercise, productivity and stress. They also have short SOS meditations you can access on the go to help pull you back to a focused headspace in moments of increased anxiety or panic. Start your day right with The Wake Up sessions, follow Move Mode while getting your cardio in and pick a Sleepcast or Soundscape to help you unwind before bed. Whatever your routine, you’ll be able to bring some peace and mindfulness to any time of your day with Headspace.
Running out of new meditations to follow or sick of the same old soundscapes? You won’t have this problem with Insight Timer as it has over 40,000 meditation and music tracks to choose from. With over 80 new tracks being uploaded to the app every day, you are sure to find something that suits your mood, style and meditation method. The in-app timer function is easy to use with soothing polyphonic bell tones to mark intervals during your session. There are also a multitude of community groups you can connect with via Insight Timer as well as statistics and milestones to track your progress.
Meditation is an ancient practice that has been around for thousands of years and Sattva has endeavoured to bring that authenticity to a modern setting in the form of a simple, easy to use app. Sattva’s guided meditation, sounds and music are delivered by Sanskrit scholars so you will be able to explore meditation from its roots. The in-depth tracking functionality allows you to record your heart rate, mood, length and location of session. To keep you motivated, you can also set yourself challenges and unlock trophies along your journey. With curated playlists and collections, you’ll never be confused about what you should meditate to.
If you’re looking for a way to make mindfulness a daily habit, then Simple Habit is the app for you. Simple Habit allows you to set reminders for yourself so you never miss a session and with a focus on short, five minute meditations, you’ll be able to fit one in after you wake up, before you go to sleep or even when you have a break at work. Listen to life coaching talks from world-renowned experts and get the most out of your meditation. Whether you’re aiming to fall asleep quicker and deeper, relieve anxiety and stress, or increase your self-awareness, Simple Habit has the tools to be able to live a happier and healthier life.
Not ready to dive into the world of traditional meditation just yet? Smiling Mind is an Australian designed mindfulness app developed by psychologists and educators to help you bring some balance and calm into your busy life. With curated programs for kids, teenagers, adults and families to classroom and work settings, Smiling Mind has something for everyone. They even have a selection of Indigenous language options as well. You can set reminders, track your progress and mood to see how you are improving over time. Perfect for those who are new to mindfulness, Smiling Mind will help you find some inner peace and a new outlook on life.
In the mood for trying something new at home? We’ve got the top 8 tips for beginning a yoga practice at home. Or, if you want to take your meditative journey outside, pair it with one of the best secluded walks around Sydney, Melbourne, Perth and Brisbane.
Featured Image: Photographed by Mon Shari. Image via Unsplash